Regional CEO Of WTA Asia-Pacific Named
Published September 30, 2013 12:00
ST. PETERSBURG, FL, USA - The WTA has appointed Ryan Sandilands as the Regional CEO, Asia-Pacific. Sandilands, who will be based out of a new WTA office in Singapore set to open in January 2014, will be responsible for driving the WTA's growth strategy throughout Asia-Pacific, including business development, government relations, marketing, operations and media distribution. With the WTA Championships to be staged in Singapore from 2014 to 2018 and a record number of events in China and Asia-Pacific, the naming of Sandilands represents a significant strategic investment to drive the growth of the world's leading sport for women in some of the fastest growing markets in the world. Sandilands will begin in his new role in the coming months and report to Stacey Allaster.
"I am thrilled to welcome Ryan to our team and know that with his entrepreneurial experience across sports, entertainment and brand development in Asia he will build upon our success and take women's tennis to new heights throughout Asia-Pacific," Stacey Allaster, Chairman & CEO of the WTA, said. "Since 2008 we have invested heavily in China, and with our crown jewel WTA Championships coming to Singapore, today's announcement is another defining moment in the WTA's history to build our fan base, our brand and business in China, South East Asia and key markets across the region."
"The WTA is one of the fastest growing sports entertainment properties in Asia-Pacific, and I am honored to join Stacey and her team to achieve the WTA's vision to be the most inspirational and exciting sport entertainment experience in Asia," Sandilands said of the announcement. "I look forward to building upon the strength of WTA players and tournaments in the region to grow and engage our fan base across multiple platforms and further extend the popularity of women's tennis."
In the newly created role, Sandilands will be responsible for developing and executing a commercial strategy to drive revenues across all markets in the region; and strengthening key relationships across China and Singapore, including with the Singapore Tourism Board, Singapore Sports Council, and World Sport Group to ensure the staging of the best WTA Championships in the history of the WTA. He will also work with the governing bodies throughout the region and specifically with the Beijing Municipal Sports Bureau, China Open and the Chinese Tennis Association to continue growth in China. Sandilands will also be responsible for marketing, media distribution across multiple platforms, sponsorship partnerships as well as operations to support the WTA's tournament and player members.
Sandilands brings close to two decades of sports and entertainment experience to the role, including most recently having served as Managing Director of North Asia based out of Beijing for leading global sports marketing agency Octagon. In that role, Sandilands was tasked with expanding Octagon's global footprint into North Asia and achieved both commercial and operational success through major clients such as MasterCard, China Telecom, Samsung, BMW and Johnson & Johnson, along with a strengthening of key governmental relations. Prior to Octagon, Sandilands spent eight years with Cirque de Soleil, where he oversaw both corporate alliances and managed offices in Montréal, London, Shanghai and Sydney. In that role, he was responsible for significant increases in sponsorship revenues, the launch of a successful licensing program and expansion of touring shows to new markets across Asia-Pacific. Sandilands' extensive communications and brand management experience also includes having worked at Carat, Mindshare, Ketchum PR and Bell Pottinger PR.
Born in Scotland, Sandilands earned a BA in Marketing & Politics from the University of Strathclyde. Ryan, his wife Eva and children Lily and Charles will relocate from Beijing to Singapore in early 2014.